The Nigeria Men Basketball team, D’Tigers will face Argentina in their first game at the Olympics in a few hours. Two of the other teams in the Group, Brazil and Lithuania had tipped off the Group in an explosive game. Here are some observations D’Tigers must not ignore.
Be wary of Lithuania. This a warning that need not be delivered. The Eastern Europeans are super powers in basketball, but they lost by six (86-80) to D’Tigers in the 2012 Olympic Qualifying tournament, they will be out for blood now. The fact that they almost let a 30 point lead slip against Brazil will motivate them the more.
Brazil will believe they can beat D’Tigers. Brazil will play Nigeria last in the Group. They trailed by 30 against Lithuania, but fought back to lose by just six. The odds are that they will lose to the other European Nations too. Their only chance of qualification is to defeat their neighbors Argentina and Nigeria in that last game. They will not be smiling. We should be ready too.
Lithuania are bigger, but we can use it to our advantage. It cannot be emphasized enough: the Eastern Europeans will use their fundamentals of basketball well. Plus, they are bigger. We must use our athleticism (quickness) and shooting to devastating effect, just as we did four years ago.
The Brazilians have shown that belief is key. And we must lock into that. Lithuania scored 58 points in the first half, but were limited to just 24 (12 each in 3rd and 4th Quarters) by a more aggressive, and a better balanced and more fluid Brazilians. D’Tigers had belief in 2012, they MUST believe again!
The whole world know D’Tigers are capable of causing an upset, but the belief is that they are there to make up the numbers… Can D’Tigers prove them wrong?